Art Focus Lecture | The Advantages of Obscurity: San Francisco Women Abstract Expressionists
Among the essential features of Abstract Expressionism in San Francisco was its lack of patronage—yet there were great advantages to this situation for women. Unlike their counterparts in the East, women artists in San Francisco never had to contend with what Alfonso Ossorio called the “doctrinaire powerhouses” that excluded them, leaving them free to pursue their own artistic inclinations. This presentation will discuss the women who benefited from working in a far less chauvinistic environment—artists like Jay DeFeo and Sonia Gechtoff, whose reputations have eclipsed those of their husbands—and Deborah Remington, who co-founded the legendary Six Gallery where Allen Ginsberg marked the “semi-official” launch date of the Beat movement with his famous reading of Howl in 1955. The relationship between painters and Beat poets will also be examined.
Susan Landauer holds a PhD from Yale University and is an independent curator and writer based in the San Francisco Bay Area. She was chief curator of the San Jose Museum of Art from 1999 to 2009 and is the author and coauthor of many books and exhibition catalogues, including The San Francisco School of Abstract Expressionism; California Impressionists; The Lighter Side of Bay Area Figuration; Elmer Bischoff: The Ethics of Paint; Richard Diebenkorn: The Ocean Park Series; and Women of Abstract Expressionism, among others.
Pre-registration and Drop-in: $25 member | $30 non-member